Jonathan “No-No” Sanchez
On Friday evening, San Francisco Giants pitcher Jonathan Sanchez shocked the sports world by throwing 2009’s first no-hitter. Just one evening after the phenom Tim Lincecum took a no-hitter into the 7th, Sanchez mimicked the feat except held the Padres hitless for all 9 innings. As Yogi Berra once quipped, “Its like deja vu all over again”. Jonathan Sanchez was probably the least likely candidate to toss a no-hitter. On a night where other starters included Dan Haren, Derek Lowe, Chris Carpenter, and Roy Oswalt, it seemed ironic that the 2-8 Sanchez, who was just recently demoted to the bullpen, would get the no-no. And did I mention that he was starting because Randy Johnson was injured?
One of the most touching parts of the whole evening was when Jonathan revealed that this was the first time that his father had ever seen him pitch in person. His whole family had flown in from Puerto Rico the night before. After Sanchez struck out the last batter to complete his no-hitter, the camera showed him hugging manager Bruce Bochy and pitching coach Dave Righetti. If we crack open the history books, we find that Sanchez’ no-no was the first by a left handed Giants pitcher since 1929, back when Carl Hubbell accomplished the feat with the New York Giants. The last no-hitter thrown by a Giant was in 1976 by John Montefusco.
Perhaps the most nail-biting part of the game came with 1 out in the 9th, when Aaron Rowand saved a deep fly ball by Edgar Gonzalez for the 2nd out. In the words of Harry Caray, Edgar needed one more biscuit for breakfast and that ball would have been gone. Sanchez then struck out Everth Cabrera to end the game. Besides this being Sanchez’ first no-hitter, it was also his first complete game and shut-out. There is no doubt that Sanchez has re-solidified his spot in the starting rotation after a night like that. Congratulations, Jonathan, our hats go off to you!